[Date Prev][Date Next][Date Index]

Re: E-M:/ Hudson CAFO mixes untreated human waste with manure

Enviro-Mich message from "Grant Trigger" <GTrigger@honigman.com>

Its a good thing no ethical standards dealing with libel etc apply to
this list serve.

Depending on the waste system (this human waste into a CAFO lagoon) may
not be much different than septage which can be and is licensed for land
application.  There are significant issues with that but if done
properly is better than unmanaged dumping.  So rather than slam Mr. Ross
why not find out the detention time in the system and how this system
compares to septage applications - then judge if this is warranted.  It
may not be but where do you think the human waste from septic tanks goes
in rural areas? 

>>> "David J. Zaber" <dzaber@chorus.net> 08/26/02 01:38PM >>>
Question:  "Since when did DEQ engineers take over our Public Health

Answer:  Since public officials who are corrupt, ignorant or both were
placed in positions of decision-making by the Engler Administration.  

Answer2: Since the corporate toady Engler administration came to

Answer3:  Since untrustworthy hacks took over at DEQ and DNR.

Answer 4: Since Clinton was President (opps! That's the republican's BS
spin answer).
  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Janet Kauffman 
  To: enviro-mich 
  Sent: Monday, August 26, 2002 8:41 AM
  Subject: E-M:/ Hudson CAFO mixes untreated human waste with manure

                                           August 26, 2002
                                           Contact: Environmentally
Concerned Citizens of South Central Michigan
                                                         Kathy Melmoth,
R.N.  - 517-523-3307
  Hudson Dairy Mixes Untreated Human Waste
  With Manure For Last 4 Years - DEQ Says Fine 
          For the last four years, Vreba-Hoff I, an industrial dairy in
the Hudson area, has been adding untreated human waste to its manure
lagoon, spraying and applying it to crop fields.  The Michigan
Department of Environmental Quality, complicit in this practice, granted
Vreba-Hoff permission to mix the human and animal wastes. 
          The practice of using untreated human excreta as fertilizer
poses extreme public health risks because of the concentration of
pathogens, including hepatitis A, cryptosporidium, E. coli, and giardia.
  People at greatest risk are the employees working with the untreated
waste and residents downstream.  
          Vreba-Hoff I has been cited by the DEQ for 5 illegal
discharges of manure to streams in the last 2 years.  Because of the
multiple discharges, the dairy is currently undergoing review with the
Enforcement Unit of DEQ.  The facility confines approx. 2500 cows and
generates 25-30,000 gallons of untreated animal waste per day (more than
8 million gallons per year).
          Discharges from Vreba-Hoff have contaminated Medina Drain,
which enters Bean Creek before it flows through Medina County Park.  One
stretch of Bean Creek in the Park has been a swimming area for many
          Details concerning the Vreba-Hoff  facility on Dillon Hwy in
Medina Township, and recommendations for its waste-handling system, were
included in a letter from DEQ to the Lenawee County Health Department,
obtained under the Freedom of Information Act by Environmentally
Concerned Citizens of South Central Michigan (ECCSCM).  
          In the letter dated December 3, 1997, Jon Caterino, District
Engineer with the Environmental Health Section of DEQ, wrote that "it is
the recommendation of this office that the human sanitary waste
generated by the 21 proposed employees be plumbed into the waste system
being designed to handle the animal waste at the facility."
          The Vreba-Hoff facility was under construction at the time. 
Caterino explained that a site inspection showed "heavy clay soils not
particularly suitable for construction of a septic tank and tile-field
sewage disposal system."  DEQ official Scott Ross of Groundwater Permits
Section of DEQ agreed that the idea to mix human and animal waste "would
not harm the environment, was a cost effective method of handling the
waste," and stated that DEQ would not oppose the Vreba-Hoff proposal.
          While the DEQ often points out that failed septic systems
contaminate streams, in this case an industrial facility with numerous
employees was exempted entirely from the sanitary requirements that all
new residences, most with just a few family members, must meet.  Nearby
Lime Lake residents must install a new sewer system, with homeowners
paying as much as $7,000 each, because of septic pollution of the lake. 
The Vreba-Hoff dairy, however, was exempted and given a "cost-effective"
alternative that requires no septic system, no treatment before
           "This is 2002.  This is not a proper way to handle human
waste," said ECCSCM member Kathy Melmoth, a registered nurse.  "Since
when did DEQ engineers take over our Public Health policy?"

Confidential:  This electronic message and all contents
contain information from the law firm of Honigman Miller
Schwartz and Cohn LLP which may be privileged,
confidential or otherwise protected from disclosure.
The information is intended to be for the addressee
only. If you are not the addressee, any disclosure, copy,
distribution or use of the contents of this message is
prohibited. If you have received this electronic message
in error, please notify us immediately (1.313.465.7000)
and destroy the original message and all copies.

ENVIRO-MICH:  Internet List and Forum for Michigan Environmental
and Conservation Issues and Michigan-based Citizen Action.   Archives at

Postings to:  enviro-mich@great-lakes.net      For info, send email to
majordomo@great-lakes.net  with a one-line message body of  "info enviro-mich"